One of the most important environmental problems in Iran is the destruction and drying of Urmia Lake (UL). UL is one of the main causes of suitable weather for agricultural boom and tourist attraction and it should be considered that the villagers exposed to UL drying have a strong dependence on vulnerable resources such as water, air, soil and plants for their livelihoods and have low adaptive capacity with this crisis for reasons such as poverty, lack of awareness and lack of infrastructure. This study was designed to evaluate the vulnerability of rural households to UL drying in the Shabestar region. The vulnerability was calculated based on Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) definition and using vulnerability index (VI
). Research population included rural households of Shabestar region (N = 19,249) and about 347 households were selected as the research sample using multistage cluster sampling technique. Results showed that the average score of respondents was 0.455 (moderate) in exposure, 0.359 (moderate to low) in sensitivity, 0.404 (moderate to low) in adaptive capacity and finally, the vulnerability index (VI
) was 0.470 (range of 0 to 1). 12.8% of households had low, 70.5% had medium and 16.7% had high vulnerability towards UL drying.
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